Thursday, March 17, 2016

What Republicans Should Have Said (But Won’t) About Obama’s SCOTUS Nomination

In politics, providing a reason for doing what you do is almost as important as doing the thing. Instead of the lame, inside-baseball “We just don’t confirm Supreme Court Justices in an election year” justification Republicans have offered, here’s how they should have clarified their opposition:
We cannot, and will not, confirm any justice to the Supreme Court whose vote would imperil important constitutional rights such as the right to bear arms and the right to freely practice and exercise religion.
This would have clarified why Obama’s nominees need to be opposed in a manner that reaffirms commitment to constitutional principles and resonates with key constituencies of the Republican base. And if Judge Merrick Garland passes this test, then maybe there’s something worth talking about.
But, instead, they will probably just stick with the original line that makes them look like a bunch of yammering, out-of-touch, politicians.

Chief Judge Merrick Garland 
In 2007, Judge Garland voted to undo a D.C. Circuit court decision striking down one of the most restrictive gun laws in the nation. The liberal District of Columbia government had passed a ban on individual handgun possession, which even prohibited guns kept in one’s own house for self-defense. He also voted to uphold an illegal Clinton-era regulation that created an improvised gun registration requirement.

Garland has a long record and it leads to the conclusion that he would vote to reverse one of Justice Scalia’s most important opinions, D.C. vs. Heller, which affirmed that the Second Amendment confers an individual right to keep and bear arms.

Buried in a questionnaire Garland submitted to the Senate Judiciary Committee in 1995 is his disclosure of volunteer work for Democratic politicians that stretched from his years as a college student up to Bill Clinton’s presidential campaign in 1992.

So here you have a left-wing Jewish Judge who believes you have no right of self protection. You'd think after what's happened to his people in the past, he'd be a bit more reasonable.